It depends on the conditions. Generally speaking surfing a wave in low wind requires a medium pump and a big kitesurfboard, strapless or not. I do that with a Jimmy Lewis surfboard and a Cabrinha Contra 14. But in very low wind forget the front side riding. The speed of the wing cannot match the speed of the board and consequently the lines can loose tension. So the back side riding it's the way to go. I rember two years ago I had a "dangerous" low wind wave session at Kanaha Beach park, Maui when I rode in side/on conditions 12 Knots 6 meters wave with a Cabrinha Contra 14 and a Cabrinha surfboard 5,3. The wind was so low that sometimes the kite was prone to stall but I was able to catch waves really, really big. Cheers.
Dude it cant be under 12 knots and be kiteboarding heaven. Those are mutually exclusive. Honestly if you drive 250KM for 12K you have a pretty bad deal. 12K I don’t leave home like many people in my area and I live 20 minutes drive from the beach (but we are lucky in terms of wind).
Number one thing you have to do is the right board, before you even talk about kite. Already covered here, but I have to emphasize that again. A good light wind board and glassy conditions will make a lot of kites that you would not guess otherwise work in light wind conditions. Since I got light wind boards I don’t use any kite bigger than 12, and this year I will try that with a 10. But then again I don’t go out in 10K unless I am super desperate, starved, unemployed, depressed etc.
There were days when I was desperate and did go out with a 12m and light wind board in choppy conditions 12K and lower, and stayed upwind. The key for that was the board and the fact that I am light. Had fun? Not sure.
You are in a tough spot. I would say on the extreme end you are getting into flysurfer territory, but I don’t know if that territory (ultra low wind with a big foil) includes fun. I have seen crossbows 12m ridden in very low wind and HAVING FUN, 2-3m jumps. How low, I don’t know for sure because it was too low for me to get into a 5MM wetsuit, but I guestimate around 12 knots maybe a tad lower. Definitely not 5-7.
I think some claims made here are not so believable.
Waves and lightwind IMO is the toughest combination, you have to catch up with fast waves which is very difficult without speed and may not be even possible in some conditions, not to mention that turning speed, response and recovery are slow in light wind for every kite.
D'ONT MAKE ME LAUGH
14m is my Moderate wind kite.
18m bow or a 20m C is a light wind kite, Nothing like my 2005 Rhino2 for a light wind kite!!!!
Ya a 14m Contra will get Ya going, But ya w'ont be having much fun in sub 12MPH wind......
Another option would be to make a large kite board. We made a 50cm x 162cm plywood board, see attachment, which gets me going in 20km wind using a 12m c-kite on 25m lines. I'm 64kg and my bud is 80kg but he made his board a tiny bit bigger (same shape tho) and also uses a 19m PeterLyn kite.
I think the board makes the biggest difference.
...In my opinion Innis is mixed up, this is an experience and perception issue,
because without a good engine how could you have a good acceleration and speed,
the low end pulling power of a kite?
Please move on and try different equipment to develop more fun in kiteboarding activity.
Trust me light wind riding is a pain of a butt without the right combo
U-C my user name, it's for a reason
abel wrote:A big flat bard is more important than the kite !
Abel is correct. A big flat board is more important than the kite.
Some folks don't want you to know this, but economically you'll get way more lightwind milage out of a big flat board than you will from a big, slow-turning, expensive kite. If money's not a problem, get the kite too (they help), but pay off your car loan and get a big flat board first.
Interesting that you would suggest that "I" have it mixed up. I was agreeing with Abel and there are others who agree with us too, so I guess you're suggesting that we all have it mixed up. Even FredBGG posted "A big flat board is important...". However, if people perceive that it's just one person you're disagreeing with it makes what you say sound more credible. I'm sure the username you chose for yourself adds to your perceived credibility too.
The boards cost less than half what a big inflatable does and less than a third of what a big Flysurfer foil does. No doubt that the kite can make a difference, but the board makes a bigger difference and costs way less. Like I said above:"If money's not a problem, get the kite too (they help), but pay off your car loan and get a big flat board first."
Last edited by Innis on Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
aeberl wrote:So it seems that the Flysurfer Speed2 has set the standard for light wind performance (old school and free ride), but most people agree that it sucks in waves. So which kite would be the kite for light wind wave riding and free style riding?
Has naybody had any xperience on the OR Rise Venturi 15m?
Pure light wind performance...probably the Speed 2's....barring the new Speed 3 21M. For usability...the Speed 3's are a lot easier to handle than the S2's (IMHO). If you're looking for something quicker turning...you could do worse than a Psycho 4 or 3... Not the same low end as the Speeds but better in the turns etc. The big foils are an acquired taste... All said...I take my 15M S3 out in smallish waves with my Door 154 and have a pretty good time as long as the wind is consistently above 10kts. When I crash it's usually sitting over my head waiting for me to get myself sortetd... I can hold it down into the low 20's so the range is pretty good though I'll often switch to my 10M Vegas before then (about 18 kts). I'm 183 cm and 100 kg...so not a light weight.
However, some of the big new tube kites look pretty good... I've played with the big Epic kite and it's pretty good. Turns quick for a 16M...but wont go (for me at least) as low as the S3 that I've got.
Hello TKITEBOARD. Yes the Dyno is great light wind kite.I tested the 18M w/2.5m extensions(total 27.5m lines)using North Freerace twin fin,Whip 5'7" & Kontact 5'9".For a tube kite it is the closest in smooth power than the speed 3 21M.Can not go in as low of wind however by about one knot.Not bad considering that it is 3M smaller.Was not tested with a full blown raceboard.My threshold in summer wind was 8 knots(9.2mph) to fly upwind with Dyno.Take note it is quite a workout to pump if you do all by hand.It is not one pump. 7 struts and impressive leading edge.Electric pump for leading edge is what i did while i pumped the struts.In a side by side test comparing against speed3 15M deluxe the Dyno 18 clearly had more power and was more fun in waves in 9.5knots (10.9mph) using Whip 5'7" Dyno is primarily a race kite but in experienced hands works well for use in waves. SupaEZ